CHANDIGARH: The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) on Saturday announced a pre-poll alliance for the 2022 Assembly elections in Punjab. The announcement in this regard was made jointly by SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal and BSP national general secretary Satish Chandra Mishra. The last two parties had come together in 1996 Lok Sabha elections bagging 11 out of the total 13 seats.
Describing it as a new day in politics of Punjab, Badal said, “It is a big turn in Punjab’s politics.” On the seat-sharing formula, Badal said that the BSP will fight on 20 seats, while the SAD will contest on the remaining 97 seats. The BSP will contest on seven seats in the Malwa region, five seats in the Magha region and eight seats in the Doaba region.
SAD Chief Sukhbir Badal said out of total of 117 assembly seats, BSP will be fight on 20 seats & rest will be fought by SAD in Malwa region BSP will fight 7 seats, Magha region 5 seats & Doaba region 8 seats#Pb @Newindianxpress, @TheMornStandard, @gsvasu_TNIE, @khogensingh1— Harpreet Singh Bajwa (@Harpreet_TNIE) June 12, 2021
According to sources, the BSP wanted 35 seats but only got 20 seats. This is the same figure that was BJP’s quota when it contested elections in partnership with the Akalis. SAD, a former ally of the BJP, is aiming to fill the vacuum left in some seats after the end of the ties over farm laws.
Punjab has 31.94 per cent scheduled caste population- the highest in the country as per the 2011 census. In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the BSP got a vote share of 3.49 per cent. In 2017 assembly elections, the BSP vote share was 1.50 per cent but failed to get any seats.